Jimbaran is a small town in South Bali.
Jimbaran is just south of the airport and Kuta. This was formerly a real backwater of south Bali -just a tiny fishing village with a daily market. That all started to change in the 1980s though, and Jimbaran is now home to several world class five-star beach resorts, plus a number of more moderate mid-market hotels. There is little in the way of budget accommodation though.
The bay itself has a pleasant white sand beach and is very safe for swimming. The three clusters of grilled seafood restaurants on the beach are a major tourist draw in the evenings, as is the truly stunning sunset.
Jimbaran has an increasing number of rather chic shops but there is little or no nightlife here. It has the advantage of being a little closer to Kuta and Seminyak (and the cultural highlights of Central Bali) than Nusa Dua.
As elsewhere in Bali, motorbikes are available for rental and taxis are everywhere. This is one of the better areas of South Bali for walking.
Jimbaran Bay is fringed by one of the best beaches in Bali. The sand is fine and white, and the calm waters make it very suitable for swimming, children and adults alike. The southern end of the beach close to the Four Seasons Resort is the quietest but the whole stretch is very pleasant indeed.
The sunset in Jimbaran is very beautiful. Arrive at around 5PM, take a seat in one of the restaurants located on the beach, order food drink, and enjoy the stunning, romantic sunset while waiting for your orders.
The traditional Jimbaran fish market is located at the northern end of the bay right by the beach at the junction with Jalan Tukad Ayung. The catch comes in every morning here and customers include most of Bali's fine dining restaurants. All manner of fish and shellfish on show. Best to visit between 6AM and 9AM.
There are a couple of good surf breaks off the airport which are easiest accessed from Jimbaran Bay. It is too far to paddle out, but boats are easily chartered from the beach in the middle areas of the bay or close to the fish market. When the surf is rolling here it is very good but it can be a bit unreliable.
This is a great bay for swimming with perhaps the safest waters in the whole of Bali. You will find lots of local children come to beach to swim in the evenings - a sure sign that the waters are safe.
Jimbaran has a number of high-end spas, both within the luxury hotels and independent establishments.
The Body Spa , +62 361 764737, +62 361 764737, 2PM-10PM daily, Jl Uluwatu 99x, Kelan, A top class spa with two venues in Bali. Full range of beauty and body treaments. Not the cheapest by any means but the standard is top notch. Booking at least 24 hours in advance is recommended
Bliss Massage, 10AM-8PM daily, Jl Uluwatu II, just east of the Four Seasons roundabout on the north side of Jl UluwatuII, Not a spa as such, but a traditional massage parlour. Excellent, traditional Balinese-style therapeutic treatments at very good prices.
Henna Spa , +62 361 701695, 11AM-9PM daily, Jalan Uluwatu 18x, at Villa Balquisse, opposite the Intercon, A five star standard spa in a true luxury environment. Offers Javanese and Balinese treatments.
Eating seafood on the beach in Jimbaran is a quintessential part of many a visitor's itinerary when coming to Bali.
Jimbaran Bay is home to about fifty grilled seafood restaurants in three different groupings, all set along the beach. Each of the restaurants is much of a muchness and of the groupings, the most southerly closest to the Four Seasons is the most popular these days.
Tables are set up right on the sand and if you sit at the lowest tables at high tide, you can even get your feet wet. The sea breeze is cool, the sunsets are beautiful and the whole area is lit by oil torches after dark.
The restaurants serve essentially the same menu with one basic dining format:
fire-grilled seafood with your own choice of various fish, crab, squid, shrimp, lobster and other shellfish
local green vegetables steamed with garlic
rice or french fired potatoes
local spicy sauces
Simply go up to the seafood tanks and choose the number and type of seafood you want to eat, pay by weight and the produce is grilled there and then. You also have the option of ordering from the menu but that is nothing like so much fun.
Prices are very reasonable by western standards and dinner for two with local Bintang beer or soft drinks will cost in the range of Rp 150,000-300,000 depending on quantity and type of seafood selected. Everything is freshly caught as Jimbaran is still a functioning fishing village. If you want to drink wine, bring it with you and pay a nominal corkage charge.
The combination of atmosphere and good food make this a memorable and delightful place to spend an evening.
There are number of good, cheap local warungs on Jalan Uluwatu between the four road junction (Four Seasons roundabout) and McDonalds.
Jimbaran is very well served by high end resort hotels, and the dining options at the Four Seasons and the Ayana Resort for example are truly exceptional.
Depot Joko, Jl Raya Uluwatu, just north of junction with Jl Melasti, A very popular, no frills local restaurant serving all manner of Indonesian food. Recommended if you want a real taste of Indonesia at very low prices.
Pepe Nero , +62 361 704672, 11AM-10PM, Jl Wanagiri 18, on the small road that leads through the quarry from the Four Seasons roundabout, A little gem of an Italian restaurant in an unlikely location with nice views of Jimbaran Bay. Superb pastas and pizzas at very keen prices. Highly recommended.
There is no nightlife at all in Jimbaran but there are few better places in Bali for a sunset drink on the beach. Whether is it is a beer a sitting on a plastic chair at the beachside fish cafes or an elegant cocktail at PJ's bar at the Four Seasons, just enjoy that wonderful sunset.
There is not much in the way of budget accommodation in Jimbaran. Low cost travellers are better off staying in Kuta and day-tripping Jimbaran which is just 20 minutes away.
Bukit Inn (formerly Villa Koyo) , +62 811 3808011, +62 811 3808011, Jl. Uluwatu, Bukit Ungasan, Located atop Jimbaran Hill, 100 metres from GWK (cultural park). Follow the Uluwatu road a kilometre up from Jimbaran, and you'll pass a couple of places to stay, patronized mainly by Surfers. On the west side of road is the Bukit Inn.
Keraton Jimbaran Resort , Jl Merajpati, Recently refurbished after years of decline. All 102 rooms feature private balconies with either ocean or garden views. Coffee shop, lobby bar and restaurant on site. Also offers babysitting services, volleyball, badminton, billiards, fishing, spa services, sailing, tennis and windsurfing.
Puri Bambu Hotel , +62 361 701468, +62 361 701468, Jl Pengeracikan, Kedonganan, All rooms have balconies overlooking the pool or gardens. The resort has two restaurants and a large pool with a sunken swim-up bar. Complimentary airport transfers.
Sari Segara Resort, +62 361 703647, +62 361 703647, Jalan Pantai, Kedonganan, A slightly bizarre looking hotel with a tower block that looks all wrong in Jimbaran. It does though offer good service and value for money given the beach-side location. Huge pool and 24 hour room service/restaurant.
Ayana Resort (formerly the Ritz Carlton Bali) , +62-361-702222, +62-361-702222, Jl Karang Mas Sejahtera, Absolutely **huge** cliff-front resort set in 77 hectares of prime Bali real estate. Was formerly the Ritz Carlton Bali but changed maangement in late 2008 after a well publicised court case. It seems that the new branding and management is living up to the previously excellent standards. Ayana has a huge variety of accommodation with 279 rooms and 70 private villas. An astounding 8 restaurants, 4 bars and a waterfront spa complete the line up here.
Four Seasons Jimbaran Resort , +62 361 701010, Jl Bukit Permai, A supremely elegant hotel right on the shores of Jimbaran Bay which is regularly voted as one of the very best resorts in the world. The 147 rooms are all villas with either a plunge pool or larger pool in the more substantial properties. Has all the services you would expect in such a high quality resort and in PJs posseses one of the best known beach front cafes in the whole of Bali.
InterContinental Resort Bali , +62 361 701888, Jl Uluwatu 45, A large, five-star hotel built in a grand Balinese style, with lovely architecture, beautiful gardens and extensive ponds and swimming pools. The resort also has a nice stretch of sandy beach frontage on Jimbaran Bay. Rooms are spacious with plenty of closet space and large marble bathrooms. Rates are surprisingly affordable for a high-end resort on Bali, starting at about US$ 140 per night. Prices for food and drink within the resort, however, are exorbitant but fortunately, the resort is directly next to the delightful beachfront seafood restaurants of Jimbaran
Jamahal Resort and Spa , +62 361 704394, +62 361 704394, Jalan Uluwatu 1, A boutique luxury resort with 13 private villas, two of which have their own private pool. In house spa and lounge. Good location just across the road from the Intercon and easy walking distance to the beach.
Jimbaran Puri Bali , +62 361 701605, +62 361 701605, Jl Uluwatu, This report has a choice of private walled cottages and villas with private pools. Large communal pool, decent restaurant and in-house spa facilities. Three minutes walk to the beach and some villas have beach views. An Orient-Express Hotel.
Karma Jimbaran Resort , +62 361 708800, Jl Bukit Permai, An all villa resort offering completely private 3 and four bedroom properties. Two minute walk to the beach and a few of the villas have ocean views. Gay/Lesbian friendly staff and management. Member of **Leading Small Hotels of the World**.
All the villas listed below are standalone and feature private entrances, dedicated staff, accommodation and their own swimming pools.
The Longhouse , , Tiara Nusa, Jl Goa Gong, This 6 bedroom private villa spans the Jimbaran hillside at Goa Gong. Great 180 degree views of the bay, mountains and lush greennery. Sleeps up to 12 people and is fully staffed with private chef, maids, security etc,
Villa Ayu , Halcyon Villas at Jimbaran Bay, Located next door to the Four Seasons Resort, this is a 3 bedroom luxury pavilion style villa with large pool and gardens. Airport transfers, housekeeping and cooked breakfasts are included.
Shopping in Jimbaran has improved greatly in recent years. There are a number of nice boutiques and antique shops in the stretch of Jalan Uluwatu between The Intercontinental and the junction with Jalan Uluwatu II.
Slightly futher north on the same street is Jimbaran Market which is a hive of activity every morning as the local community goes about its business. This is a notably good place to purchase fresh produce.
Jimbaran was the site of a terrorist bombing in 2005, but the sand and airy construction of the restaurants kept casualties much lower than in the previous Kuta attack.
Jimbaran is only 10-15 minutes south of the airport, and a pre-paid airport taxi costs between Rp 60,000 and 80,000 depending on exactly where in Jimbaran you are heading. Virtually all Jimbaran hotels offer a free airport pick-up service and make sure you request this when making a booking.
Jimbaran is around a 20 minute drive from Legian and Seminyak, and 30 minutes from Sanur, via the Jl Ngurah Rai bypass.
Bemos serving Jimbaran are almost non-existent but there is a sporadic service from Tegal terminal in Denpasar via Kuta. This service continues on to Nusa Dua.
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